Has Anybody Painted the White, Strong Flexible Material?

Discussion in 'Finishing Techniques' started by retalsmas, Apr 8, 2012.

  1. retalsmas
    retalsmas New Member
    Hi All,

    Has anybody painted the white strong flexible material?

    How does it take paint? Do I need to use a primer? Can you recommend a particular type of paint?

    I'd ideally like a super glossy, high sheen finish.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


  2. Pilgrim1908
    Pilgrim1908 New Member
    Yes I have painted WSF. It needs several coats of primer before it accepts paint well, and there is a very rough surface. I would recommend giving it several - ie three or four coats of gloss varnish before you paint it to smooth it out
  3. stop4stuff
    stop4stuff Well-Known Member
    Have a trawl through the Post Production Techniques forum for WSF.

    For a high sheen finish, I'd start with Shapeways Polished WSF, followed by some kind of filler primer*, sanding, more primer/undercoat, sanding, painting followed by polishing or gloss varnish.

    *it occurred to me that acrylic woodwork primer work might be good for this as it has some gap filling qualities - as yet untried so your mileage may vary.

  4. retalsmas
    retalsmas New Member
    Thanks all,

    Good advice. I'll post the results when they come through.

  5. ZoeBrain
    ZoeBrain New Member
    Painting WSF - there are a few rules.

    1. Don;'t use Tamiya paints. The solvents react badly with WSF

    2. Do seal before painting. This can be done successfully in several ways: acryllic floor polish works well. Slightly diluted PVA glue works well. Several coats of spray undercoat can work too.

    Examples of painted WSF:

    This one is decalled and painted. Original model is only 5cm long


    Decalled and Painted models


    After sealing with floor polish:

    After painting, but before dullcoting on lower wing:


    Showing size of models:
    Drew92 likes this.
  6. pinddle
    pinddle New Member
    Is that Enamel or Acrylic Tamiya paint that reacts ?

    Nice collection of planes,btw.
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2012
  7. Roy_Stevens
    Roy_Stevens New Member
    Acrylic by definition uses water as a solvent so should be safe on anything, but it doesn't stick well and tends to be less durable, thus the need for primer. I don't have time for that. I airbrush directly on untreated WSF using Floquil enamel with no adverse effects.
  8. stop4stuff
    stop4stuff Well-Known Member
    For WSF;
    Taymia fine surface primer followed by Humbrol enamels is good*.
    Dipping the model in diluted artists acrylic and allowing to dry between dips is good* too.


    *good = no adverse effects or peeling of paint.
  9. ZoeBrain
    ZoeBrain New Member
    Note - these were polished WSF, not straight WSF.

  10. stop4stuff
    stop4stuff Well-Known Member
    And here is a plain WSF Bowie the Bunny, again firstly sprayed with a few coats of Tamyia Fine Surface Primer followed by Humbrol Silver Acrylic spray.

    I would also recommend that anyone with doubts about just what paint to put on WSF (polished or plain) whould have a google to find out what solvents react with Nylon12 and avoid paints containing those solvents (btw, when I was researching this, I couldn't find any readily available solvents that attack Nylon12 - but you might)

    So I guess the upshot is, your mileage may vary IF the model is not properly cleaned before painting.

  11. Jettuh
    Jettuh Well-Known Member
    Here some more WSF painted models:

  12. BillBedford
    BillBedford New Member
    Hi Jettuh

    Is there any chance of you bringing these to the next London meet-up so we can talk trains?

  13. MitchellJetten
    MitchellJetten Shapeways Employee CS Team
  14. fred_oliver
    fred_oliver New Member
    I've been soaking my WSF models overnight in a product called Thompson's Water Seal. I figured that, if it works on concrete and wood, it might also work on sintered nylon. I tried painting a small piece with both Model Master enamels and Aero Master acrylics. The paint took well, although I don't know if the soaking helped in any way. The liquid level in the jar has been dropping, so maybe some of it was absorbed by the nylon.
  15. stop4stuff
    stop4stuff Well-Known Member
    That's interesting fred.oliver - here's the product page blurb

    "Thompson's Water Seal utilises hydrophobic technology to deliver invisible protection against water damage. The deep penetrating formulation travels deep into exterior dry porous surfaces to form a breathable membrane that allows moisture vapour inside the substrate to evaporate whilst protecting against water penetration and damage. Thompson's Water Seal has a unique formulation which, unlike some waterproofers, penetrates the surface therefore waterproofing even after the initial beading is gone. It will not be destroyed by ultraviolet light and is long lasting even under heavy moisture conditions. Assuming application instructions and coverage guidelines are adhered to it provides effective water repellency for years."

    Looking further in the small print "Do not apply Thompson's Water Seal to plastic type materials"

    Please let us know how the model is after a few weeks.

  16. fred_oliver
    fred_oliver New Member
    It's been a month or more since I started soaking WSF models overnight in Thompson's water seal. I don't know if it does any good, but it appears to do no harm. I used a glass jar for larger models and a disposable plastic cup for small parts. The Thompson's water seal softened the plastic cup, which may explain the manufacturer's warning. I haven't done any large-scale painting yet so don't know what (if any) difference it will make on the final product.
  17. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    I've painted two polished WSF models so far with no sealing before hand whatsoever. I used Testor's enamel model paints since I had them on hand and after a few coats of each color I sprayed a few coats of lacquer and here are the results:



    For anyone familiar with the program, these are sonic screwdrivers from Doctor Who. I've carried a few of them around with me to the bar and played around with them, dropped countless times, and thus far no paint chipping or wearing away. If you're curious about the texture on the first one, it's crackle paint (although I didn't lay it on thick enough and it ended up just looking like stucco).
  18. Drew92
    Drew92 Member
    I have the same question.
  19. Bryanphenry7
    Bryanphenry7 New Member
    Hi guys

    I have a friend is France he has also told me to used Acrylic paints because I ask the same question I hope this helps.

    Regards bryan
  20. Bryanphenry7
    Bryanphenry7 New Member
    hi Sam

    Acrylic paints are to be used